Position Statements

Position Statements

Use of inadequate training methods

Behavioural problems are one of the major reasons for owners to relinquish their dog to a shelter or even to euthanize them. As veterinary behaviourists, our main priority is animal welfare but we are also concerned with the quality of the pet owner relationship from the human perspective. Our aim is to help pets live more successfully with their owners and with the wider community.

Unfortunately, aversive training techniques have received a great deal of media and TV attention recently and many members of the pet owning public may be persuaded to use them as a result.

In order to inform owners of the dangers of these techniques and the availability of alternative methods which are both more humane and more effective the European Society of Veterinary Clinical Ethology (ESVCE) is issuing this common position statement to stress that these techniques can pose a serious welfare concern for dogs and significant risk to owners who may implement them.

The ESVCE supports the positive role of dogs in society and encourage all the members to increase the profile of positive training techniques.


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Electronic training devices

ESVCE members have adopted a position statement on electronic training devices on their AGM, September 2017. The statement was prepared by a working group consisting of Sylvia Masson, Angelo Gazzano, Silvia de la Vega, Esther Schalke. The text was corrected for English by Elizabeth Walsh and Tiny DeKeuster gave helpful comments.

Risk Assessment

The ESVCE position statement on risk assessment has been published in Journal of Veterinary Behavior (2011) 6, 248-249

We will happily answer any questions you might have about the ESVCE or veterinary clinical ethology